Mai-Otome – 04
During the chaos ensuing from Rado’s attack, Arika finds herself lifting a ship to prevent it from falling on the people below. Her nanomachines start to crumble away under pressure, but she’s saved when Meister Haruka arrives to help. After the incident is over, Natsuki tells Arika that she’ll be allowed to enter the school and Nina will be allowed to stay, much to Mashiro’s chagrin. Arika gets outfitted with a uniform and is told two important things. First, an Otome is not allowed to come in contact with the opposite sex. Yohko explains that the nanomachines respond poorly to the Y chromosome. And second, an Otome and her master are connected in life through their GEMs. If the Otome gets hurt, the master does too. If the master dies, so does the Otome. Later, Arika is introduced to the class and shown to her room. She tries to make friends with Nina and Erstin Ho, but Nina is quite cold with her. Over dinner, Arika frets to Erstin and Irina Woods about school fees because she has no family to help out with them. The girls in the dining hall are surprised with her situation, but Tomoe Marguerite arrives in time to stop the questioning. They notice that Mikoto (the cat) is eating Arika’s meal, so Arika starts yelling at her and Mikoto runs away, getting Arika’s apron dirty in the process. Arika takes her clothes to the laundry room, but since the machines are all being used, she puts her apron in a basket above them. Meanwhile, under the moon, Nina remembers the time she looked at her father’s picture book again. Sergay saw her looking at Rena’s picture and told her that she is the person of his dreams. As Nina thinks about her father, Juliet Nao approaches her from behind, and we learn that the two of them are from the same place. Back in her room, Arika feels her GEM and remembers everything that’s happened the past few days. As she falls asleep, someone takes her stained clothes from the laundry room.
This episode is decent, but not as good as last week. I had hoped for the conclusion of Shizuru’s fight and Arika/Haruka saving the people to go longer than the two minutes at the beginning of the episode that it got. Instead, the episode focuses a lot more on introductions to characters and set-up, including the two vital pieces of information mentioned in the summary above. The Otome-not-allowed-to-come-in-contact-with-males already has several ramifications from Rena to Akane. The second part about the master and the Otome being connected is probably going to end up being similar to the most important person bit from the original series.
Anyway, it’s good to see Haruka and Yukino again. Haruka is feisty as usual, but a lot more butch, while Yukino looks like her normal self. As cool as Haruka’s entrance is, it still doesn’t quite beat Shizuru from episode one. We also get introduced to a lot of Arika’s Otome classmates. Like Mentar said, there’s a ton of characters now, and we still haven’t seen the return of everyone from the original series (and you can be sure most of them will show up at some point).
Speaking of which, time for a fanboy moment, courtesy of the preview: OMG!. That probably doesn’t mean anything quite just yet, but it hints at Mai coming back at some point (which I guess a lot of us had already taken as granted). At any rate, next week looks like more fun for Arika getting used to her new school.